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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

SU Breaks Ground on New Perdue School Building

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Architectural Rendering

This architectural rendering shows the west facade of Salisbury University’s new Franklin P. Perdue School of Business building, featuring the main entrance from campus.


breaking ground on Perdue School of Business

From left: Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development Deputy Secretary Dominick Murray, USM Chancellor William E. "Brit" Kirwan, Mitzi Perdue, Delegate Norman H. Conway, SU President Janet Dudley-Eshbach, Jim Perdue, Perdue School Interim Dean Richard Hoffman, SU Campaign 2012 Chair Henry Hanna III and Perdue School Building Fundraising Chair Bruce Rogers.

SALISBURY, MD---Before a celebratory audience, Salisbury University President Janet Dudley-Eshbach, members of the Perdue family and other dignitaries officially broke ground on the campus’ new home for the Franklin P. Perdue School of Business on Tuesday, September 29.

At 112,800 square feet, the three-story, $56 million project will provide another bold landmark for campus visitors and travelers along Route 13.  With state-of-the-art study spaces, resources and services for the next generation of business leaders, the building, its location and facilities will also strengthen the school’s business and community outreach efforts.  It is scheduled to open in fall 2011. 

“Without the commitment of the Arthur W. Perdue Foundation and the Perdue family, this groundbreaking today would not be possible,” said SU President Janet Dudley-Eshbach.  “The new building means many things:  By providing students the resources they need, it will help prepare them for success in the knowledge-based economy.  It will enhance collaboration between the Perdue School and the local business community.  Beautifully designed, it will be a striking addition to SU’s changing skyline.  And, for me personally, it will become a wonderful tribute to Frank Perdue and his entire family, who not only founded a business school, but transformed a university.”

“For years, my Dad dreamed that Salisbury University, which he attended, would someday have an acclaimed, outstanding business school,” said Jim Perdue, chairman of Perdue Incorporated.  “He started that dream by endowing the school in 1986.  Now, housing the Perdue School of Business in a state-of-the-art facility is a major step forward in fully realizing his vision.”

Frank Perdue’s multi-million dollar gift made the Perdue School of Business the University’s first endowed school.  It lived in the north wing of Holloway Hall until outgrowing that location and the school then temporarily moved to Caruthers Hall.  In 2006 the Arthur W. Perdue Foundati

Architectural Rendering
The north end of the new building (right) includes an entrance to the Perdue Museum and Business Outreach Services Suite (BOSS), as seen from Route 13.

on announced an $8 million gift for the construction of a new home for the business school—the largest private donation for a capital project in University history. 

Representatives from the Perdue School, Perdue family, University administration and SU Foundation, Inc. have tirelessly worked on the building’s planning and design since then. Funding for the project will come from public and private sources, and the University is currently engaged in a major campaign on its behalf.

“Salisbury University has a history of public-private partnerships, benefiting students, the community and higher education in Maryland,” said Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley.  “In challenging economic times, such partnerships are more important than ever, particularly those which support business education and community outreach.  This new building, which will be a boon to higher education as well as the local economy, epitomizes the good which can be accomplished when the public and private sectors work together.”

About the Building
Located between Henson Science Hall and Route 13, the new Perdue School building will architecturally complement the Teacher Education and Technology Center, recently cited among the 10 best-designed university buildings in the country for 2009 by College Planning & Management Magazine.  Architects for the Perdue project are Richter Cornbrooks Gribble, Inc. of Baltimore, and Perkins & Will of Charlotte, NC.  Contractor is Holder Construction of Atlanta.  Like the TETC, many of the building’s architectural elements are inspired by Holloway Hall, a classic academic Georgian complex and a historic site. 

Of particular interest to local entrepreneurs, businesses and service organizations will be a new Business Outreach Services Suite (BOSS).  It will become headquarters for Perdue School community outreach efforts, including the Business, Economic and Community Outreach Network (BEACON).  The Maryland Small Business Development Center (SBDC) also will use the facilities for programs.  Included are incubator offices, training and collaboration rooms, and other services.

BOSS will be located near the new Perdue Museum.  This unique feature will have a treasure trove of business records, marketing and advertising materials, videos and memorabilia including photographs, posters and even bobbleheads from the Perdue Incorporated archives.

During his career Frank Perdue made advertising history with his “It Takes a Tough Man to Make a Tender Chicken” media campaigns.  He started a trend of corporate CEOs appearing in television commercials and for years was a national advertising icon.

Architectural Rendering
The architectural rendering of the lobby of the new building shows a light and open interior.

The museum materials also represent decades of Perdue family leadership going back to company founder Arthur W. Perdue and progressing to Jim Perdue today.  Local historians may enjoy the memorabilia from such Perdue interests as Shorebirds baseball and family history which dates back to France.  Exhibits will rotate and spotlight other Eastern Shore businesses as well.


The building will have two striking colonnaded entrances.  The north entrance for the museum, BOSS and other public services faces the TETC.  The second faces inward toward Henson Science Hall and opens into a soaring space for students to gather.  It includes a stock market electronic ticker, Internet café and 200-seat auditorium.

Specialized business labs will allow students access to resources in their fields of study.  The different-sized and specialized meeting rooms, including a computer lab, a training center, an observation suite for focus groups, executive classrooms and an M.B.A. suite with case rooms, will help students engage in team projects as well as individual research.  The building has 25 classrooms and labs including one for distance learning, 63 faculty offices, staff offices and a suite for business student organizations.

In keeping with SU’s commitment to sustainability, the University is pursuing LEED Gold Certification for the Perdue School’s new home.  Efforts include reduced water and energy usage with a partial geothermal HVAC system and use of recycled materials.  Up to 15 percent of the paved area where the Perdue building is being constructed also will be returned to grass and softscape materials thus reducing storm water runoff.

“The new Franklin P. Perdue School of Business at Salisbury University represents what is best about the University System of Maryland (USM) and SU on multiple levels,” said USM Chancellor William E. “Brit” Kirwan.  “It represents a true public-private partnership. It enhances enrollment in a key discipline at a time when demand for higher education is on the rise.  It strengthens the many connections between the University and the adjoining community.  And, as a potential LEED Gold Certification facility, it will achieve all these goals while honoring the USM’s commitment to sustainability.”

“The Perdue School is the largest college-level center for business education and development in the region,” said Dr. Richard Hoffman, interim dean of the Perdue School.  “The new building articulates school and University priorities in its use of space, from group work to electronic research and communication, to outreach.  It both supports our current efforts and challenges us to expand our vision locally and globally.  The world is changing and the Perdue School with it.”

For more information, call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Web site at

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Perdue Museum
SALISBURY, MD---A distinctive feature of Salisbury University’s new Franklin P. Perdue School of Business is a museum dedicated to business and commerce, one of the few on a university campus nationwide.

The museum will include rotating space to showcase local and regional businesses, as well as archives donated by Perdue Incorporated.
Included will be documents from three generations of Perdue family management—founder Arthur W. Perdue, Frank Perdue, and current company chairman Jim Perdue.

Poultry magnate and philanthropist Frank Perdue, who founded the Perdue School, became an advertising icon in the 1970s after appearing in his company’s television commercials. Often touting the slogan “It Takes a Tough Man to Make a Tender Chicken,” the commercials made advertising history, and Perdue became one of the first company owners to successfully speak directly to a national audience.

His celebrity led to such unique and affectionate tributes as a parody in Mad magazine and even a Frank Perdue bobblehead—believed to be the first produced in the likeness of a business leader.

According to David Ranzan, SU archivist, the museum will be one of only a handful of campus-based business museums in the United States. “Other campuses have museums dedicated to art or anthropology, but there aren’t many with a focus on business,” he said. “We are excited to have the opportunity for such a unique installation.”

In addition to business documents, the museum will feature ephemera from other Perdue interests including the Delmarva Shorebirds and Bowie Baysox minor league baseball teams, and the Perdue family history from France to the United States.

The museum is scheduled to open as part of the new building in fall 2011. For more information call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Web site at

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SU’s New Franklin P. Perdue School of Business Building By The Numbers
2 – Years to construct the new Perdue building

3 – Stories in the new Perdue building

4 – Departments in the Perdue School

6 – Countries where Perdue students engage in global studies, including China, France, Germany, Finland, Estonia and the United Kingdom
7 – Undergraduate Perdue School programs

8 – Institutions worldwide (including SU) accredited by the Network of International Business Schools

13 – Offices and rooms in the new Business Outreach Services Suite (BOSS), which will house the Business, Economic & Community Outreach Network (BEACON), and Maryland Small Business Development Center (SBDC) programs

15 – Percentage of paved construction area being returned to grass and softscape materials to reduce storm water runoff

25 – Classrooms and business labs

36 – Enrollment growth percentage of Perdue School undergraduate majors in the past five years

63 – Faculty offices

200 – Auditorium seats

323 – Students who completed Applied Business Learning Experience (ABLE) internships last year

570 – Colleges and universities worldwide accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, which places SU in the top 5 percent internationally

1986 – Year the late Frank Perdue endowed the Perdue School

2011 – Year SU will complete the new Perdue building

1,751 – Students enrolled in Perdue’s undergraduate majors and M.B.A. program

$5,000+  – Amount awarded annually to student winners of the Bernstein competition for business plans

112,800 – Square feet in the new Perdue building

$8 million – Gift from the Arthur W. Perdue Foundation in 2006 for the new building’s construction—the largest private donation for a capital project in University history

$56 million – Cost of the new Perdue building

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Perdue Incorporated
PERDUE® is one of America’s most trusted and recognized brand names. Ranked third in sales in the poultry industry, the company is a leading international food and agriculture business. Its operating subsidiaries, which include Perdue Farms, provide quality products and services to retail, foodservice and agricultural customers in more than 40 countries.

Privately held and family run for three generations, the company employs more than 20,000 associates and partners with 7,500 independent farm families—all who share in the commitment to quality, service and reliability that has guided the company since its founding in 1920.

Perdue also ranks among the top 12 U.S. grain companies and is a major producer of agricultural products—from refined soybean oil to feed ingredients. It has its own fleet of barges, leased rail cars and a deep water port to export grain and agricultural products around the world.

Setting the highest standards for quality, food safety, environmental stewardship and poultry welfare, Perdue Incorporated is an American business leader.

The Franklin P. Perdue School of Business
Salisbury University’s Perdue School is the largest college-level center for business education, and community and economic development, in the region.  More than 1,700 students are enrolled in Perdue’s seven bachelor’s degrees and the M.B.A. program.  Business administration is one of the largest academic majors on campus.

In 2008, the Perdue School was reaccredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), a hallmark of excellence earned by fewer than 5 percent of business schools worldwide.   In 2009, the Perdue School became one of only eight institutions worldwide accredited by the Network of International Business Schools.  With an international curriculum, it has developed global study programs in such countries as France, Germany, China, Finland, Estonia and the United Kingdom.

Entrepreneurship is encouraged through the annual Bernstein award competition, and for the past two years, international students have earned the top $5,000 prize for best business plan.  As part of professional development, all Perdue School majors are required to participate in an Applied Business Learning Experience (ABLE).  Student interns work everywhere from Trinity Transport in Delaware to Wall Street.  Many intern at Perdue Incorporated.

Salisbury University
Nationally recognized for academic excellence, SU offers 42 undergraduate and 13 graduate programs to some 8,200 students.  Exceptional students, a highly regarded faculty and dynamic administration have made SU A Maryland University of National Distinction.

For the 13th consecutive year, SU is one of U.S. News & World Report’s Top Public Universities, the highest placing public master’s-level university in Maryland.  More kudos come from The Princeton Review’s Best 371 Colleges and Best Northeastern Colleges.  Offering excellence at an affordable price, SU also ranks among the nation’s “Best Value” public colleges, according to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and The Princeton Review/USA Today.  The Chronicle of Higher Education named SU one of its 2009 Great Colleges To Work For®.

Longtime observers of the institution credit Frank Perdue’s initial financial commitment as critical to current SU success.  Frank Perdue was, in many ways, one of the founders of today’s Salisbury University.

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